19. 11. 2008 (PR – Vilnius Business College)
Vilnius, Lithuania – EIT (English for Information Technologies) partnership has formed to develop and launch an interactive, easily accessible, user-friendly e-learning tool – „English for IT“ portal with a number of course companions. EIT is an English for Specific Purposes teaching/learning module. It will be designed as an Internet portal for IT professionals and students of IT, comprising English lessons at the post-elementary level with a strong emphasis on learner training and autonomy.
In the short term, the EIT product will:
- fill the gap in the available ESP materials in the field of IT and provide English tutors working with IT students at colleges and universities with flexible, relevant and attractive e-materials to be used during classes or set as a homework or for self-study;
- provide working IT specialists with a self-study e-learning tool developed to improve their English language skills, learning and communicative skills;
- enable both tutors and learners to share their teaching/learning experience, concerns, impressions of the course, share self-made teaching materials and give feedback to the course developers by means of the message board;
In the long term EIT will:
- improve language skills, learning skills and communicative skills of the target groups;
- facilitate free mobility of IT specialists and make professional communication easier for them;
- provide IT specialists with access to European experience and body of knowledge since major part of it is available mainly in English;
- improve the quality of and access to vocational training;
- promote the idea of lifelong learning and encourage working professionals develop their skills.
The project idea was already born in 2002, when Vilnius Business College, following the overall Pan-European demand for IT specialists, introduced a new 3-year study programme – Computer programming. The curriculum included 320 hours of English language, and there was an urgent need for teaching/training materials in this field. It was only then when the obvious gap was realised- the research was carried out into ESP (English for Specific Purposes) in the field of IT, targeting several sectors at once (national and foreign partners-universities and colleges, websites of the main publishing houses and their outlets, IT specialists), which showed that choice of materials was limited. Several printed materials have been found available and they either are outdated or target learners with intermediate and higher language level. Teachers’ feedback confirmed the current situation – they complained about lack of variety in printed materials, lack of online resources, and absence of materials for IT students with elementary level of English. Summing up the results of the research and keeping in mind that IT is a fast-developing field that printed materials cannot keep up with, there is an obvious need for online ELT/ESP materials in the field of IT designed for elementary and post-elementary learners.
Read more: www.kolegija.lt, www.english-it.eu